You can buy a heck of a lot of paper and pencils for $599.
LOL, I think you missed the point of cost vs price. Unless you're retired, your labor cost is far more than a piece of paper and a couple of pencils and that's where the ROI lays with Volts. Also, the download is free for 10-days so....how much was that piece of paper and pencil again?
And currently Volts sells for $499.00 from Dolphins Software and only $449.00 from ECN's store.
Doing it this way is more fun and keeps us sharp. I don't want to "dumb it down" by relying on software.
Agreed. But if you're going to attempt these types of computations I suggest that you use the normal engineering methods established by IEEE Standard 141 in place of formulae guessing and assumations. The Standard 141 is featured in IEEE's Red Book which can be purchased on EBay. Also, this type of problem requires a Sequential Voltage Drop method of computation, not Ohm's Law.
Additionally, please don't forget to account for ambient and terminal temperatures when selecting your conductor size along with a continuous load increase factor of 125%.
And with an ambient temperature of 105ºF, terminal temperature at 90ºC, metal conduit, type THHN insulation with copper conductors, 125% conductor capacity, power factor at unity; the first conductor size is #8 with 0.43%VD and the last is #10 with 2.87% VD per IEEE Standard 141 Exact Voltage Drop Formulae. Computation time was about 25 seconds 'cause I type slow.
[This message has been edited by DiverDan (edited 10-30-2005).]